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Royal Tern
Sterna maxima
The Royal Tern (Sterna maxima) is pretty much strictly a coastal tern and is only rarely found far from salt water. It can be common on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts of the United States as well as parts of the California coast at certain times of the year. It is also found along the coasts of both Central and South America. The first eleven shots here were taken on Sanibel Island, Lee Co., Florida in November, 2006, with a Canon EOS 1D Mark II and EF 500mm F/4 L IS lens.
The next 2 shots of Royal Terns were taken on South Padre Island, Cameron Co., Texas, in April, 2009, with a Canon EOS 50D and an EF 800mm F/5.6 L IS lens.
The next 4 shots of Royal Terns were taken at Port Aransas, Nueces Co., Texas, in February, 2010.
The next three shots show basic (winter) plumaged Royal Terns at South Padre Island, Cameron Co., Texas, in December, 2010. These images were taken with a Canon EOS 1D Mark IV and an EF 800mm F/5.6 L IS lens.
Royal Tern
Sterna maxima
pair mating
Texas City Dike,
Texas City,
Galveston Co., Texas
30 March 2016
Royal Tern
Sterna maxima
pair mating
Texas City Dike,
Texas City,
Galveston Co., Texas
30 March 2016
Royal Tern
Sterna maxima
pair mating
Sea Rim State Park,
Jefferson Co., Texas
4 April 2017
Royal Tern
Sterna maxima
pair in courtship
Sea Rim State Park,
Jefferson Co., Texas
4 April 2017
Royal Tern
Sterna maxima
pair in courtship
Sea Rim State Park,
Jefferson Co., Texas
4 April 2017
Royal Tern
Sterna maxima
illustrating bill color differences between some individuals.
Bolivar Flats,
Galveston Co., Texas
5 April 2017
Royal Tern
Sterna maxima
Bolivar Peninsula,
Galveston Co., Texas
6 April 2017
Royal Tern
Sterna maxima
juvenile (left) and adult
North Padre Island,
Kleberg Co., Texas
18 July 2017
Royal Tern
Sterna maxima
juvenile (left) and adult
North Padre Island,
Kleberg Co., Texas
18 July 2017